Essex County Council urges residents to check they have received MMR vaccination

13:19 25 April 2013

Essex County Council is encouraging residents to check with their GP whether they have had two doses of the vaccine to protect themselves against this highly infectious disease.

Although only some areas of the country have been affected so far, most areas like Essex have enough older children at risk to sustain an outbreak.

There have been two confirmed cases of measles in Essex since the start of the year.

Dr Mike Gogarty, Essex County Council’s Director of Public Health, said: “The only way to prevent a measles outbreak in Essex is to make sure there is good uptake of the MMR vaccine across all ages.

“Parents should ensure their children are fully protected against measles, mumps and rubella with two doses of the MMR vaccine.

“The current rise in measles cases can be attributed to the proportion of largely 10 to 16 year-olds who are unprotected because they missed out on vaccination in the late 1990s and early 2000s, when concern around a now-disproved link between autism and the MMR vaccine was widespread.

“It is never too late to get vaccinated against measles. I would encourage parents of unvaccinated children, as well as older teenagers and young adults who may have missed MMR vaccination to make an appointment with their GP to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

“If you are unsure whether you or your child has had two doses of the vaccine, speak to your GP who will have a record.”

The World Health Organisation recommends that having more than 95% of children vaccinated will stop outbreaks occurring.

The latest data available shows vaccination coverage for MMR across Essex at age 2 is approximately 93% and at age 5 is approximately 89%.

Normally the first MMR vaccine is given when a child is 12 to 13 months old, and a booster dose is given before a child starts school, usually at 3 ½ years of age.

Experts believe the current rise in measles cases is largely due to the proportion of children now aged 10 to 16 years old who missed out on vaccination in the late 1990s and early 2000s, when concern around a now-disproved link between autism and the MMR vaccine was widespread.

Many of the cases which have occurred are in older children of these ages.

It is this age group which is believed to be most at risk and who should check their vaccinations are up to date.

0 comments

More news stories

Constance surrounded by all her imidiate family

A woman who cycled home from Hastings to Thaxted on a tandem on the day the Second World War broke out has just celebrated her 100th birthday. Connie Jarvis was born on June 17 1915.

Yesterday, 16:18
Police

The Safer Essex Roads Partnership is calling for greater awareness of motorbike safety after incident figures have soared in the county.

Yesterday, 12:11
Alex Dowsett - Winner of Verulam Cycling Club event

It has already been a big year for Essex born cyclist, Alex Dowsett, who smashed the World Hour Cycling Record with a total distance of 52.937km in May.

Yesterday, 10:02
DUN 27 Stansted Medieval Fayre

Jousting with knights and princesses, a medieval pageant, the ringing of St Mary’s Church Bells, maypole dancing and traditional children’s games entertained over 2,000 people in Stansted Mountfitchet on Saturday.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Dunmow Broadcast e-edition today E-edition

Most read stories